This blog post is really about two things. First of all, I’d like to explore the notion that content marketing or brand storytelling are just new, trendy buzzwords. In fact, it’s just a more systematic approach to something that’s been going on for a while. Any activity you’ve been doing to drive people to your web assets, and to get them to interact with you and eventually buy into your brand is a prototypical form of content marketing. Marketing professionals are great at – well, at marketing – so once we took this combination of activities and started streamlining it and giving it a direct tie-in to business goals, we also started giving it specific names.
That isn’t to say it’s just old wine in a new bottle. The digital landscape has changed immensely in the past decade. Social media is in the forefront, content is still king, but people expect content with engagement and the online dialogue has become resolutely many-to-many. So a composite methodology to tap into the online audience’s demand for engaging storytelling has emerged. It’s a variety of tested ideas and new techniques crafted to adapt to the new scenario.
The two main components of content marketing are:
- Telling a compelling story around your brand
- Using it to create engagement with existing or potential customers
Now, we come to the second theme of my post; the one contained in the headline. Storytelling is already a well-understood craft. But how do you show the link between your brand stories and your business goals?Let’s look at each kind of content, how it drives engagement and how that engagement ties back to your business.
- PR: Public relations stories generate awareness, which leads to website visits, referrals to your communities and traffic on your social profiles. This traffic can be measured and connected to revenues using a standard set of conversion metrics of the kind web analysts already use.
- Blogging: There’s a clear connection between a regularly updated, informative blog and an increase in site traffic as well as search visibility. Again, this traffic can be tracked and connected to revenue-generating points like product pages or calls for demos/consultations.
- Social media: Your posts on social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and so on will earn you likes, +s, shares, retweets and so on. This increases the total size of the online community you can reach out to. This increases opportunities to connect with your audience and to create brand advocates.
- Online ads: The eyeballs and clicks that you get contribute respectively to awareness and to revenue, helping drive brand engagement – albeit at a cost.
So, there you have it. The key to content marketing is the ability to tell a great brand story, drive engagement and tie that engagement in with business outcomes. Looking for a digital marketing partner who is committed to driving desirable business outcomes? Drop us a line!
Author Bio: Narayan Rajan, is the founder of iVista Digital Solutions and he is the driving force behind iVista’s growth story. An individual with an insatiable passion for all things Digital, Narayan is a first-generation entrepreneur and virtual brand evangelist. His expertise is based on a unique blend of different facets of experiential and digital marketing, product development, sales management and organizational building. A keen observer of business and technological trends, he constantly looks at ways to customize existing offerings and new the possibilities in the digital industry.